Ask the grumpies: Help! Need unsweetened non-dairy creamer recommendations!

Chelsea asks:

Soliciting advice for a good unsweetened non-dairy creamer. Right now I just use whole milk in my coffee, but would like to experiment with going dairy free for awhile. I looked at my local grocery store, and almost all the options were sweetened somehow, and I really don’t like sweet coffee. I’d probably prefer coconut or almond-based rather than soy, but would try soy if that tasted the best. I don’t like alt-milks, but I’m hopeful I could come up with a creamer solution.

We at grumpy rumblings have got nothing.  I guess if I were going dairy-free I’d try just coconut milk.  I find other kinds of non-dairy milk to be a bit sweet and I hate the taste of soy milk.  So I guess I’d go coconut, then almond, then rice.  Other people have different preferences.

This website has suggestions for fancy dairy-free creamers.  Nutpods looks like an option.  There are a bunch more of varying sweetness levels and bases on that link.

Here’s a link to making your own from almonds and dates.

Good luck with your quest and report back to us!

Grumpy Nation, do you have favorite unsweetened dairy-free creamers?

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17 Responses to “Ask the grumpies: Help! Need unsweetened non-dairy creamer recommendations!”

  1. Mrs PoP Says:

    I’ve never tried it in coffee, but cashew milk seems to have a thicker creamier consistency than almond, without as much flavor as coconut milk (if you don’t want coconut coffee!). Silk sells a plain unsweetened variety.

  2. Calee Says:

    Mocha mix is unsweetened and dairy free. I don’t know what it’s made from but it’s the best neutral coffee creamer I’ve ever had.

  3. kemt Says:

    The lazy and cheap solution: I just open a can of coconut milk (usually bought from the “ethnic” section, usually avoiding guar gum etc ’cause what’s the point of that?) and scoop out a spoonful of coconut cream per coffee. Coconut milk in a can does not last forever in the fridge so I do this for 4 days or so (seems like after a week it starts getting off flavors from the fridge) but remember, this is literally “open can, scoop, put can in fridge” rather than “open can, move coconut milk to sealable food-safe container, refrigerate” because it is a lazy method. Then I make curry, hot chocolate, or this awesome chocolate pudding with the rest: https://sarahfragoso.com/chocolate-custard/ . Use an orange liqueur for a fun touch, or add cinnamon & a touch of chili to make it “mexican”. No one notices this custard is dairy-free (if you use dairy-free chocolate) except my brother who is then super-grateful he can eat it.

    A box of fancy non-dairy creamer is like $4 and I never use it very fast. A can of coconut milk is $1.69 at a cheap ethnic grocery or a big-box with an ethnic aisle. So that’s my solution.

  4. Jay Says:

    My husband can’t use milk or cream – he likes the Silk soy creamer (not the soy milk, the creamer) because he doesn’t care for the flavor of coconut in his coffee. I have found the Silk creamer to be a wonderful substitute for milk or cream in most baking recipes, so we’re going through a lot of it this time of year…

  5. xykademiqz Says:

    I also take my coffee black with a touch of milk, no sugar. On occasion, when I am out of milk, I have used my youngest kid’d coconut milk (Silk original, i.e., lightly sweetened) and it’s great. It is not so sweet to sweeten the coffee and it has a nice taste. (However, I hate creamers in general and would always go for milk over cream/creamer/half-and-half, so YMMV and all that.)

  6. nicoleandmaggie Says:

    #2 has no good suggestions. I take my coffee black. (Unless I am ordering a silly fancy drink at a coffee shop, in which case, yes whole milk and whipped cream, please and thank you.)

  7. nicoleandmaggie Says:

    In general, I support cutting down on dairy consumption if that’s what you want to do, or cutting it out entirely. I have found that non-dairy substitutes for dairy products are gross. I’d rather have something that was not intended to contain dairy in the first place. (Midwestern upbringing: real dairy or GTFO)

    ETA: this is also how I feel about meat. I would eat a hamburger, or a bunch of vegetables instead, but not a vegetarian fake burger. I would eat a beef hotdog, or no hotdog at all, but not a TVP dog. There are so many delicious ways to serve tofu without making it weirdly-shaped. Real pork bacon or no bacon at all. (Turkey bacon is gross and not worth it; ditto fakeon)

    • nicoleandmaggie Says:

      #1 notes that “fake” burgers that aren’t pretending to be meat are often pretty good. See: mushroom burgers, chickpea burgers, etc. She shares #2’s general dislike of fake meat that’s trying to be meat.

      Exception: corndogs are so fake that she can’t generally tell the difference between a veggie corndog and a “meat” corndog. (Both are delicious but neither are things she should be eating.)

    • chacha1 Says:

      I’m with you: real dairy or GTFO. I don’t understand wanting to go dairy-free if you don’t have a metabolic imperative. All the good stuff is dairy (cream … cheese … yogurt … gelato … Baileys … did I mention cheese).

    • Gwinne Says:

      Yes. Although I will admit I like coconut milk chocolate ice cream.

  8. nicoleandmaggie Says:

    Today’s action item:

    I would like to request that Senator [your (Republican) senator here] join John McCain and Lindsey Graham in calling for an investigation of Russia interference in the 2016 election.

  9. Debbie M Says:

    Another strategy is to try to get used to it black. If it works that would be so simple! If you want the creamer to make the coffee less strong, you could use water. If you want it to cool down your coffee, you could put some coffee in the refrigerator and then use that.

    Disclaimer: I don’t like coffee at all, plain or with stuff in it. (Not even mocha ice cream!) Except I like to hold it in my hands when I’m cold. And maybe exhale into it when it’s near my face to warm up my face. It smells good, but my tongue, she is a harsh critic with a childish disposition. (My tongue says, for example, that unlike you, I *should* be eating corndogs.)

  10. Jenny F. Scientist Says:

    All the commercial ‘coffee creamers’ are sweetened as far as I know (and delicious!). I seem to remember TJ’s has some that aren’t *as* sweet. Unsweetened soymilk, I find kind of gross. (I also don’t like black coffee and have a true, hives-and-ER dairy allergy, otherwise it would be half-and-half all the way.) I second the plain coconut milk from a can though I’ll add that the kind with guar gum does stay emulsified a bit better. Commercial nut milks almost all have emulsifiers because otherwise you end up with very fine nut puree at the bottom and weird watery stuff at the top. I’ve made ‘oat milk’ and I did NOT like it in coffee; YMMV, but it tastes like oats. In coffee.


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